The UUSCM Faith Endorsement is a focused assessment of Unitarian Universalists seeking endorsement for certification by the Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc. (BCCi).

The Unitarian Universalist Society for Community Ministries supports community ministers as they discern, articulate, promote, and engage in their ministerial calling. We are a professional organization of ordained and lay ministers who are called to serve the greater community.

UUSCM  recognizes that community ministries are diverse in both who and how they serve the world. We strive to heal what is broken, create an environment where justice is served, inspire humanity to its best practices, and promote harmony with the Spirit of Life .

What UUSCM membership has to offer:

* Faith Endorsement Process for BCCi
(Board of Chaplaincy Certification inc)
* First Friday Monthly Conversation Salon
* Code of Professional Practice
* Good Officer Support
* Annual Convocation
* Resources for Affiliation and Covenants
* A Supportive Community for Collegial Relationships

Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc. (BCCi).

The UUSCM created the Faith Endorsement for BCCi in collaboration with the UUA to provide UU’s who are called to professional chaplaincy with an option for endorsement that does not also require receiving fellowship from the UUA Ministerial Fellowship Committee. The UUSCM Faith Endorsement is strictly applicable for the purpose of achieving BCCi certification as a professional chaplain or pursuing the ACPE education required for BCCi certification.

Applicants for UUSCM Faith Endorsement must complete and submit a series of requirements that demonstrate their active engagement with the UU faith, awareness and knowledge of UU values and identity, and a commitment to live into those values as a BCCi chaplain.

The requirements include essays about UU engagement and identity, passing a real-time interview with the UUSCM Endorsement Panel, and a demonstration of a commitment and progress towards preparation as a professional chaplain.

Endorsements granted by UUSCM are granted for a period of five (5) years before a renewal process is required, coinciding with the 5 year review and evaluation process required to maintain BCCi certification. Endorsed Chaplains are required to meet ongoing UUSCM requirements and be renewed periodically.

These requirements are established by the UUSCM and are subject to change. Please complete the UUSCM Endorsement Inquiry & Registration or contact for the latest Faith Endorsement information.

NOTE from 2022: We have replaced "UU Lay Chaplain" with "UU Professional Chaplain". 

GA 21 workshop #602 Announcing: UU Lay Chaplain Denominational Endorsement by UUSCM. 

General Requirements for BCCi Certification:

Schedule of Interviews

Spring Interview Cycle

February 1 - Deadline for Faith Endorsement consideration for Spring Interviews
March 1 - Notification to Applications regarding application and interview dates
March/April - Scheduled interview date with the UUSCM Endorsement Panel. These will happen via Zoom until further notice.
May 15 - Notification of Faith Endorsement decision.

Fall Interview Cycle

August 1 - Deadline for Faith Endorsement consideration for Fall Interviews
September 1 - Notification to Applications regarding application and interview dates
September/October - Scheduled interview date with the UUSCM Endorsement Panel. These will happen via Zoom until further notice.
November 15 - Notification of Faith Endorsement decision.

Stage 1: Endorsement Application Requirements

     UUSCM Endorsement Inquiry & Registration (required to receive Faith Endorsement application form and current requirements)

     Current UUSCM Membership

     Sponsoring Congregational Letter of Affiliation and Covenant of Right Relationship

Downloadable Sample Template for Congregational Letter of Affiliation

Downloadable Sample Template for Covenant of Right Relationship

     Personal Statement demonstrating grounding and knowledge in Unitarian Universalism (Maximum 500 words)

     UUSCM Required Coursework related to Unitarian Universalism (see list at link below)

     UUSCM Required Unitarian Universalist Reading (see list at link below)

List of Required Coursework and Reading (Google doc):

     Complete Endorsement Application Form

     Attending real-time Endorsement Interview

     Documentation of completing, or progress towards, BCCi/APC requirements

     Statement of progress and anticipated plan towards completing requirements

     Copy of a clinical contact/verbatim

     Copy of academic transcripts

     Application Fee of $150 USD. A financial hardship reduced fee of $50.00 USD  with a financial hardship is available upon request.

     Optional but encouraged: Engage with a UUSCM Chaplain Mentor.

Stage 2: Endorsement Interview & Decision

     Candidates who meet the application requirements will be invited for a real-time interview

     Interview will focus on your commitment to Unitarian Universalism, and your capacity to represent Unitarian Universalism beyond the congregational setting.

     Post-Interview candidates will receive a phone call informing them of the endorsement panel decision within 48 hours. An email documenting the decision will follow.

     Panel decisions are as follows:

     Endorsement Granted. No further action required.

     Endorsement Provisionally Granted. Additional work to address concerns must be completed.

     Endorsement Delayed. Additional work and a second interview are required.

     Endorsement Denied. You may appeal the decision through the UUSCM Good Officer.

Stage 3: Maintaining Endorsement

     UUSCM will directly inform BCCi/APC of your Unitarian Universalist Faith Endorsement.

     Adhere to the UUSCM Code of Ethics

     Maintaining your Congregational Affiliation. Provide any changes to your affiliation to UUSCM.

     Notify UUSCM of any changes to your BCCi/APC status.

     Renewal Application.

     Optional but encouraged: UUSCM Chaplain Mentor, Chaplain Commissioning Ceremony

Historically Marginalized Identities

UUSCM is committed to removing barriers faced by individuals who have been historically marginalized as a result of their identity.  Candidates are encouraged to contact UUSCM should they experience a barrier, provide details of barrier, and provide a proposed alternative that would satisfy the spirit and requirements of the UUSCM Credentialed Chaplain endorsement process.


UUSCM holds all endorsed chaplains to the UUSCM Code of Ethics and requirements for maintaining endorsement. In the event of a sustained grievance against an endorsement chaplain, UUSCM may determine consequences including revoking endorsement privileges. Please contact UUSCM regarding any grievance or questions about the process.

BCCi Faith Endorsement Requirement

BCCi values the work of discernment and endorsement undertaken by the many spiritual and faith groups who prepare and support leaders for service within their organizations and as public representatives. We look to our endorsers for confirmation of certified chaplain’s spiritual/religious identities and practices. For more information about BCCi, please visit


Rev. Justin William Almeida (he/they)

Veterans Administration of Puget Sound

Seattle, Washington

Endorsement Process Panelists

Reverend Jennifer S Dant, MDiv, BCC (she/her)

Staff Chaplain, Naples Community Healthcare System

Naples, Florida

Rev. John Cooper (he/him)

Huntsman Cancer Institute

Salt Lake City, Utah

Rev. Rebekah Ingram (she/her)

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

East Walpole, Massachusetts

Rev. Kelly Spahr (she/her)

Lifetime Home Care and Hospice

Rochester, New York

The Unitarian Universalist Society for Community Ministries

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